Google pumps $300 million into Indian social networking platform ShareChat at $5 billion valuation – Tech Observer

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Global tech giant Google supported ShareChat in India with $300 million in new funding. Early estimates put the social media platform’s valuation at nearly $5 billion. The deal is expected to be announced as early as next week.

This is Google’s second key investment in the short video space in India, after backing Josh, which competes with ShareChatsister company of Moj. Google’s investment in a bear market for Indian start-ups shows the appetite for the short-form video sector and the start-up’s investment thesis, one of the sources said.

Indian tech startups, which raised a record $35 billion in new funding in 2021, are struggling to raise funds as corporate governance concerns weigh heavily on investors facing new uncertainty over world markets.

Short video apps like Moj and Josh surged in popularity after India’s ban in 2020 Byte Dance’s Tik Tok and a few other Chinese apps following a border clash with China.

ShareChat currently has 180 million monthly active users. Moj, as well as recently acquired Mohalla’s MX Taka Takhas a combined user base of 300 million, according to one of the sources.

ShareChat was last valued at $3.7 billion in a $266 million funding round from investors including Alkeon Capital and Temasek. The firm also counts Twitter and Snap among its investors. If Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s offer to buy Twitter is successful, Musk will potentially have between 6% and 8% stake in ShareChat.

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